Superficial and minor injuries that do not bleed too much can usually be treated on your own. In first aid or traveling kits you will often find everything you need for wound care.

ATTENTION: Do you still have sufficient tetanus protection?


Minor injuries can also be entry points for tetanus pathogens or spores. Therefore every injury of the skin should give reason to check the current tetanus vaccination status. If necessary, tetanus immunoprophylaxis must be carried out immediately (Robert Koch Institute Epidemiological Bulletin No. 34).

Who Needs a Tetanus Shot?

  • If a full vaccination has not yet taken place

  • For small wounds if the last vaccination was more than 10 years ago

  • For larger soiled wounds if the last vaccination was more than 5 years ago
  • Do not touch the wound with your fingers, wear disposable gloves
  • Clean the wound, rinse thoroughly with lukewarm tap water (drinking water if possible!), if necessary help mechanically with sterile compresses.
  • Disinfect the wound well: Apply a wound disinfectant immediately after cleaning the wound.
  • Bandage wound. Sterile plasters or wound compresses for larger injuries.
  • Observe the wound: The dressings should be changed daily. Does the wound heal well? You should keep this in mind and, if in doubt, seek medical advice immediately. Signs of an impending infection or healing disorders are: increasing pain, increasing swelling, increasing redness, increasing secretion (pus).

If in doubt, you should see a doctor, especially with:

  • Deep, gaping wounds

  • Heavily bleeding wounds

  • Unclear violations of deeper structures

  • Sensory disturbance / numbness around the wound / fingers

  • Bursae are involved in the elbows and knees (risk of infection)

  • Foreign bodies are stuck deeper in the wound (e.g. sea urchin injuries)

  • Do not pull out deeply seated foreign bodies / splinters! Leave that to the doctor. It could bleed even more when you pull it out. Gently cover the injury with a sterile bandage and see a doctor.